A Cinderella Story

Am I the only one here who cleans her own house? Here in the quasi-South, the women who are hired to come clean your house are called “maids.” As far as I can tell, they’re the same “cleaning ladies” that work up North, but doesn’t it sound cool to say, “I have a maid” or “My maid comes on Friday” or “I don’t know what I’d do without my maid” or “I have to get a new maid because my old one stole my diamonds”?

I don’t mind cleaning house, really. In the time that it takes me to clean our house, I’ve had a lot of time to think about the different kinds of cleaners. I’ve decided there are three:  Suckers, Blowers and Pushers.

I’m a Sucker. My husband is definitely a Blower and we’re both off and on part-time Pushers.

As a Sucker, I like the whole concept of sucking up dirt, hair, stuff that falls off the dog, crumbs and anything left in a backpack for more than 30 days without being turned in.

I’ve been known to take the vacuum cleaner hose and sweep up everything from the kitchen table to the dryer lint tray, to the dog when she’s in her shedding season. She has quickly learned to beat feet when she hears Old Sucky start up.

As a Blower, my husband finds it far more satisfying to blow the dirt into the atmosphere and beyond. For small jobs, he uses that canned air that’s supposed to be used for computers, but which he uses on everything smaller than a 10-by-10 room. For big jobs there’s the leaf blower.

Everyone has a little bit of Pusher in him. Brooms, Swiffers, dust cloths . . . they’re all tools of the Pusher. I like to push the leaves off the deck with a stream of water from the hose, even though it’s a waste of water and according to my eco-daughter could make our planet shrivel up and die within her grandchildren’s lifetime. I like it and I should be able to do this one thing, since my life is devoid of much pleasure around the time that I’m cleaning off the deck.

The ultimate clean house has been sucked, blown and pushed in the perfect combination, depending on the room and the surface. 

No matter how you clean, and despite how clean or dirty you think you are, there is always going to be someone who will act shocked at how dirty you are, and someone who is going to act shocked at how clean you are. Unless Children’s Services is coming up your front walk, you’re probably in the middle of the spectrum somewhere and you’re fine.

So suck away! Blow, baby, blow! ‘Cuz you ain’t got no maid, you Yankee!